A decision will need to be made very soon as it pertains to a replacement for late Energy Minister, Franklin Khan, who passed away suddenly on Saturday.
This from former energy minister Kevin Ramnarine.
Ramnarine said with Trinidad and Tobago still an oil and gas-dependent economy, it is critical for the Prime Minister to name a new Minister of Energy over the next two days.
He added the fact that the two most important state enterprises – Trinidad Petroleum Holding Co Ltd and the National Gas Company (NGC) – report to this ministry underscore its importance.
Ramnarine said added to this, the other reason is the shortfall in revenue from this sector and someone with a guided hand needed.
He said “A decision would have to be made very soon,” as the Energy Ministry is one of the top five ministries in the Government after Prime Minister, Attorney General, National Security and Finance Ministries.
Ramnarine, speaking to the Newsday, said as someone who held the portfolio, “It is huge. Apart from the ministry, you have the state enterprises which report to the ministry – NP, Petrotrin, now TPHL, Phoenix Park, NGC, LATT, National Quarries – the whole quarrying industry (is)under the Minister of Energy.
“Then you have constant liaison and constant interface with the multinationals – BP, Shell, BHP. Then you have a Parliament to report to. So it is really a broad and heavy portfolio.”
However, he said there is supporting structure for whoever lands in that position, from the public servants in the ministry, starting with the permanent secretary, Penelope Miles-Bradshaw, and her team, who have between 20 and 30 years of experience.